Jungle Cruise is an upcoming American adventure film directed by Jaume Collet-Serra from a story by Glenn Ficarra & John Requa and a screenplay written by Michael Green, Ficarra and Requa, based on Walt Disney’s theme park attraction of the same name. Produced by Walt Disney Pictures, the film stars Dwayne Johnson, Emily Blunt, Édgar Ramírez, Jack Whitehall, Jesse Plemons, and Paul Giamatti.
Jungle Cruise is scheduled to be released on July 30, 2021 by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures.
Set during the early 20th century, a riverboat captain named Frank takes a scientist and her brother on a mission into a jungle to find the Tree of Life which is believed to possess healing powers. All the while, the trio must fight against dangerous wild animals and a competing German expedition.
Dwayne Johnson as Frank Wolff, a shrewd but just riverboat captain.
Emily Blunt as Dr. Lily Houghton, an eccentric but adventurous and virtuous scientist searching for a tree’s magical cure.
Édgar Ramírez as Aguirre
Jack Whitehall as McGregor Houghton, Lily’s younger brother.
Jesse Plemons as Prince Joachim
Paul Giamatti as Nilo
Andy Nyman as Sir James Hobbs-Cunningham
Quim Gutiérrez as a villain
Simone Lockhart as Anna
In September 2004, it was announced that Jungle Cruise would be developed for Mandeville Films, with a script by Josh Goldstein & John Norville. The film was loosely inspired by the theme park attraction of the same name. The film was announced to take place within the twentieth century. In February 2011, it was announced that Tom Hanks and Tim Allen, who had previously worked together in the Toy Story franchise, would star in the long-gestating film, with a script to be written by Roger S. H. Schulman.
In August 2015, it was announced that Walt Disney Pictures was redeveloping its film adaptation based on Jungle Cruises, to star Dwayne Johnson. The script was originally written by John Norville and Josh Goldstein, and would be written by John Requa and Glenn Ficarra, and the film produced by John Davis and John Fox, with the intention to harken back to its period roots. In April 2017, Johnson expressed his interest in having Patty Jenkins helm the project, but in July 2017, Jaume Collet-Serra was announced as the director of the film.
In January 2018, Emily Blunt joined the cast. The same month, Michael Green was reported to have rewritten the script, previously worked on by Patrick McKay and J.D. Payne. In March 2018, Jack Whitehall joined the cast to portray the brother of Blunt’s character. In April 2018, Édgar Ramírez and Jesse Plemons joined the cast to portray villains with the former being “a man with a conquistador background”. In May 2018, Paul Giamatti joined the cast to portray a “crusty harbormaster.” In June 2018, Quim Gutiérrez joined the cast to portray one of the villains.
In December 2018, it was reported that Whitehall’s character would be gay and would have a coming out scene in the film with Johnson. This would be the second incidence of a gay character in a live-action Disney film, the first being Le Fou, portrayed by Josh Gad, in the 2017 adaptation of Beauty and the Beast. There was some backlash over the report, with some online expressing anger over a straight man being cast as a “camp” gay character.